Life Eat & Drink Dish of the day: fish and chips
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Dish of the day: fish and chips

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Skip the queue and the post-grease guilt at the local fish-and-chip shop, and take your Good Friday to the next level with this classic pub-style fish and chips recipe from Melbourne’s Rachael Lane. You’ll be fighting dirty like a seagull for the very last twice-cooked chip.

Fried fish

225gplain flour, plus extra for coating
1 teaspoonbaking powder
375mlchilled beer (such as lager)
800gflathead tails or other firm white fish fillets
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
sea salt
lemon wedges, to serve

Twice-cooked chips

1kglarge potatoes such as sebago
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
sea salt

Tartare sauce

2large egg yolks
1 teaspoondijon mustard
1 tablespoonlemon juice
250mllight olive oil
2 teaspoonsfinely chopped cornichons
2 teaspoonsfinely chopped red onion
2 tablespoonscapers, rinsed and
2 tablespoonfinely chopped chives
1 tablespoonfinely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Method

To prepare the chips, peel the potatoes and rinse under cold water. Cut into 1.5 cm thick chips. Place in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Leave to soak for 30 minutes.

Drain the chips and spread out on clean tea towels. Pat dry.

Meanwhile, sift the flour and baking powder together into a medium-sized bowl. Gradually add the beer, whisking until smooth. Cover the batter and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

To make the tartare sauce, whisk the egg yolks, mustard and lemon juice together in a small bowl. Gradually pour in the oil, whisking continuously, until thick. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Set aside.

Two-thirds fill a deep-fryer or a large heavy-based saucepan with vegetable oil and heat to 150°C.

Partially cook the chips in batches, for 5 minutes. Remove using a slotted spoon and put on paper towel to drain.

Heat the oil to 190°C.

Toss the fish in flour and dredge in batter. Cook in batches for 3–4 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown. Transfer to paper towel, to drain.

Fry the chips for a second time, again in batches (so as to not cool the oil down too much, which will cause the chips to become greasy) for 5 minutes, or until golden-brown and crisp, yet still fluffy on the inside. Remove using a slotted spoon and spread on paper towel to drain. Season with salt.

Season the fish and serve with twice-cooked chips, tartare sauce and lemon wedges.

For a unique take on the fishy tradition, check out the Cooked collection of Good Friday recipes – think fennel-cured salmon, smoked-fish pie, and crispy battered squid and prawns. 

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